Promises, promises

When Che-Che Lazaro made the mistake of guesting me on her Media in Focus show last August, I blurted out something about the blog medium’s “three promises.” All I wanted to do was point to the three elements that make up a blog — its regular frequency, its hyperlinked character, its interactivity — but I used the word “promise” advisedly. Each blog, I thought then and still think now, makes the three promises; fulfillment, however, is very much each blogger’s lookout.

Butch Dalisay’s finely wrought pieces, for example, do not depend on the comment button, which is disabled (he does run some feedback every now and then). Jay Rosen’s lengthy and learned disquisitions in PressThink are less frequent than they used to be (unless I subscribed to the wrong RSS reader, I think the pace has slowed to about one post every few weeks). And I can think of a few bloggers who practice the art of linking minimalistically.

The (real) point is: I’ve been remiss in meeting all three promises! Of the failed commitments, the one that really nags at me is the failure to reply to or even acknowledge the comments some of you have been kind enough to leave in this particular intersection. Granted, I read each comment and always feel compelled to write a reply long enough to be construed as a regular post; as you can readily see, however, I have learned quite well how to cope with the compulsion. (I make a silent promise to reply “later,” and then move on to the next comment or blog or post.)

This nagging feeling reached crisis proportions last month, after I wrote a piece on the Jesuits and their role in miseducating me — and I got wonderful feedback from, well, all over. Most of the feedback came in the form of email; every single one was written with unfailing gracefulness — thus making the art of the delayed response even heavier to bear.

(Oh, there was also a wonderful comment from Darren, who used to frequent Wild Card Gym in LA. That really floored me.)

Really, I must find a way to reply, and to reply fast enough. (How hard can it be, I ask myself at stoplights, to reply to visitors “bound by blog” to me like never-missed-simbang-gabi Dom and say, “Merry Christmas to you too, man”?)

Naga’s essential blogger, Willy Prilles, was good enough to read my first column for Inquirer.net and then leave me with a pivotal question. I’ve been meaning to answer it since he asked, let me see, three weeks ago. Maybe I can start with that. Soon. Maybe later. Maybe tomorrow.

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Filed under Readings in Media, Spiral Notebook

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